Monday, January 30, 2017

Trump’s ”Extreme Vetting” is an Extreme Disaster

President Donald Trump created another mess in his first week in the White House. His campaign promise of “extreme vetting” of immigrants took an ugly turn when he issued an executive order banning the entry into the United States for citizens of seven Muslim nations (Iraq, Syria, Iran, Sudan, Libya, Somalia and Yemen) without having any process or procedure in place.

Chaos ensued during the execution of the haphazard executive order. There was no advance notice or planning for the airports to enforce the order. Green card holders were blocked entry, some people with valid U.S. passports were threatened with deportations until judges intervened. Large numbers of protesters descended on major airports, as did lawyers there to protect the rights of those detained and to help them through the process.

It was a disaster.

The Trump administration has failed miserably in its first week. It seems that this group of people who have zero experience in running the government are just making things up as they go along. It’s unprofessional and it is frightening. In their desire to keep a campaign promise of “extreme vetting”, they completely forgot to actually come up with a process to vet people coming in to the country. There was no preparation before executing. Trump always touts his business prowess, but no smart business person would ever change their operating process or profile without having a plan in place.

It’s clear to me that Trump is just winging it. Same for his administration. I’m becoming worried that our government is in the hands of a madman, along with a staff ready and willing to enable him.

Check out my blog home page for the latest information, The Frequent Critic, here.

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Donald Trump – The Twilight Zone President

After Donald J. Trump was elected president in November, the last few months felt like a never-ending episode of “The Twilight Zone”. I sometimes expected Rod Serling to appear as a ghostly apparition and give an opening monologue to every news cast. Not a day goes by without the press highlighting some of the lies and falsehoods that are coming from Trump and his administration. Not 24 hours passed after the inauguration, President Trump and his Press Secretary Sean Spicer made incorrect statements about the size of the crowd attending the inauguration. Spicer flat out lied, stating incorrectly that “This was the largest audience to ever witness an inauguration, period”,  after which he didn’t take questions from the press. The full transcript is here:”Washington Post: Sean Spicer held a press conference. He didn’t take questions. Or tell the whole truth. “ .

The next day, on NBC's "Meet The Press", one of Trumps advisors, Kellyanne Conway, attempted to categorize the falsehoods as “alternative facts” (see the clip below). She also said she may have to “rethink our relationship”, a clear threat, in my opinion, to cutting off members of the press when the Trump administration doesn't like when the press calls them out for their lies.

The entire campaign has been full of lies, misstatements, falsehoods, and any other synonym one can think of for not being truthful.

Donald Trump and his support staff seem ill-prepared for the job. Their attitude continues to be hostile. I am embarrassed that these people represent the United Stated of America.

I’ve been silent for all these months;  if I wrote down everything that appalled me about this president’s and his staff’s behavior, I would be writing 24/7. I had to step back in the hopes that once inauguration day came, that I would see Trump and his administration grow up. Clearly, this won’t he happening any time soon.

It’s going to be a long, long 4 years… in The Twilight Zone.

Check out my blog home page for the latest information, The Frequent Critic, here.

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Trump Wins, To The Dismay of Half The Population

Hillary Clinton won the popular vote, but Donald Trump won the electoral votes. The whole electoral college issue will get dredged up again but I'll save that analysis for another day. (I wrote something on the electoral college in 2008: The Electoral College: Is It Necessary? )

The people have spoken, but the outcome was not what the majority of the people wanted.

Everyone put a lot of energy, heart, and soul into this election.  But it seemed to lack BRAINS. It’s hard to fathom how a candidate whose messages were tinged with bigotry, exclusion, and misogyny could have been elected to the highest office in the United States.

But here we are, and the cold hard fact is that we now have to live with it.

After spending the last 8+ years reading the repeated hateful rants of strangers, friends, and family about their dislike of Barack Obama as a candidate and as a president, I refuse to let the outcome of this election get me down. I don't want to be like those people who could never get over that election loss and who went out of their way to put down people who voted for Obama.

This doesn’t mean that I will be silent on things that I don’t like about our new president. My expectation will be as high as always. But I am not going to go into this new presidency with a chip on my shoulder from day one. I don’t have the energy for that and I don’t think it serves any good purpose.

I don’t know what this new leadership will bring but only hope that millions of Trump voters don’t find that they’ve been sold a 4 year supply of “snake oil.”  This country simply can't afford it. 

Check out my blog home page for the latest information, The Frequent Critic, here.

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Hillary Clinton For President – I’m With Her

I’m with her. The choice is easy. Her decades of experience makes Hillary Clinton perfect for the job as president. Some may think she is polarizing but I do not; if anything, she’s the only person with the political savvy to be able to bridge the gap between all parties. Any baggage that she carries mostly comes from her husband Bill’s past, and he isn’t the one running for president. She’s consistently demonstrated calm and rational thinking, plus grace under pressure.

I could have had a full time job the last few months simply focusing on Donald Trump’s gaffes. But why spend my time on an over-saturated topic? At first, the media trotted out Trump like a side-show freak, normalizing his outrageous behavior and comments. Finally, they realized they may have helped this buffoon actually reach the highest office in the country, and now the floodgates have opened. Trump, of course, isn’t smart enough to see this happen and with each day, he keeps digging himself deeper in a hole. This pleases me greatly and only helps my candidate more.

Donald Trump should have never been nominated. The end result of his nomination is a Republican Party in a state of implosion. If the Republicans want to be considered seriously in the future, they need to have a far better vetting process before they even present any candidates for consideration for president. The first qualification should be for any potential candidate to submit their tax returns for review, something that we are still waiting for Trump to do.  (Thankfully, someone leaked  one of his old returns, and it was a damning picture of Trump's business losses.) 

Here’s hoping that November will bring a win for Hillary Clinton. Our country needs her.

Check out my blog home page for the latest information, The Frequent Critic, here.

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Trump’s Outrageous Florida Press Conference

Donald Trump held a press conference today at the Doral Resort in Florida. I rarely watch these types of press conferences but I happened to be flipping through channels and landed on MSNBC just as it began to air. While watching, I didn’t know whether to laugh, cry, or be very afraid. In the conference,  Trump urges Russian hackers to find Hillary Clinton’s deleted emails; he doesn’t seem to know the difference between the Geneva Conventions and NATO; and he tells a female reporter to “be quiet.” And this is only the tip of the iceberg. I watched the entire conference as Trump went on a stream of consciousness rant which seemed very angry, peppered with name-calling. I found myself wondering if he could even hold up under the pressures of a debate with Hillary Clinton? I continue to be concerned that someone with his apparent lack of verbal control has come so far in a presidential election. What kind of people are seriously thinking of voting for Trump? Is this reflective of what some think is the dumbing down of America or the world? Is Trump speaking to the lowest common denominator in human beings?

Clearly I won’t be voting for him in November. If you missed the press conference, it is embedded below. It’s long but once you start watching, it’s hard to stop as Trump seems to go off the rails many times with rants. There is nothing presidential about his behavior in this press conference.

Note: skip forward about 33 minutes to the actual start of the conference

Check out my blog home page for the latest information, The Frequent Critic, here.

Thursday, June 16, 2016

We Must Find A Solution to the Gun Problem

Last August, I posted my opinion on gun control ( The Frequent Critic: “Guns Plus Mental Illness – A Recipe For Disaster” ) I had no answers but said we must find a solution.

The recent mass shooting in Orlando Florida where 49 people were shot and killed by a lone gunman – who also ended up dead at the hands of police – has brought the whole issue of gun control to a head. The Boston Globe published a powerful front page with an AR-15 assault rifle like the one used by the killer, with the headline “Make It Stop.”

It is a succinct but powerful message.

I do believe in a person’s right to bear arms, but I am sure that the framers of The Constitution never had assault rifles in mind.

We must make these senseless killings stop, and the best way to do it is to control access to these weapons. I still don’t have all the answers here but there must be enough great minds in this country to come up with something.

We need to MAKE IT STOP.

Check out my blog home page for the latest information, The Frequent Critic, here.

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Deflect & Evade: Donald Trump’s Idiotic Strategy

I’ve been trying to keep out of the political fray until the Democratic and Republican candidates for the president have been selected. But the wackiness of Donald’s Trump’s candidacy is making that impossible.

How this person, who does nothing but deflect and evade issues or questions, can get this far in the race is beyond me. How this person, who has made headlines by making demeaning comments about women, can be supported by any woman is a mystery. How this person, who preaches nothing but intolerance toward people of other faiths or nations, can even be considered for the highest elected office in the United States is frightening.

Yet here we are. While Donald Trump hasn’t as yet been crowned as the Republican nominee, it is shocking that someone can even make it into the lead this late in the game. It make me wonder about the intelligence of the people who are voting for him.

It appears that the media, which gave Trump so much coverage early on and handled him with kid gloves in order not to alienate him, has realized that possibly they helped create this monster by not calling Trump out earlier on his outrageous statements. But today, and on The Today Show, it’s clear that the gloves are off and the media is now challenging Trump for his statements. In an interview this morning on the Today Show, embedded below, it clearly shows that Trump’s strategy of deflect and evade won’t work anymore. Matt Lauer and Savannah Guthrie challenged Trump’s statements and it was obvious that Trump was flustered, angry, and painted into a corner. I can only hope this is a turning point for his candidacy, and that voters in primaries and participants in caucuses will cast their vote for someone other than Donald Trump, driving the choice of the Republican candidate to the convention in Cleveland Ohio in July 2016.

Check out my blog home page for the latest information,
The Frequent Critic, here.